Whole, Complete and Perfect  

Women we are fierce, we are great, we have power, we have grace and we are chosen for great purposes. We often become what we are surrounded by as a child, into our youth and further into our adulthood. Not everything unfolds as we would like or even at the appropriate timing. Music carries us to places we would never think; back to our first love, searching for peace or fulfillment and so much more. Marisela rocks out on her guitar, she dedicates her time to writing songs with substance, she's a businesswoman,  embraces philanthropy, performed an original song at the infamous Apollo Theater where she won. 

I was introduced to her talent, her gift, her love of music via a mutual friend and it has been a complete pleasure finding more about her. She's proud of her culture, she believes in education for all, her views on life and music our honorable. As I took the time to look a little closer, I realized that the world is in need of more women of substance with strong visions and great purposes.

I invite you to partake in my interview with her, where she is candid, open, enlightening and truly a talented artist.



Tell me a little bit about your background and where you were born.

I was born in Los Angeles to two Texans and we all moved back to Texas when I was four.  I grew up in Dallas, TX where I had an instant relationship with music.  My father is a childrens music writer who plays the piano and guitar, so I was exposed to music from a very young age.  I started playing piano at the age of 2 and guitar at the age of 6, but singing was always my forte.  I was involved with choir and band all through school and majored in Vocal Jazz at the University of North Texas before moving to New York City.  I lived in New York for 13 years until recently, when I moved back to Dallas.  My career highs have included winning at the Apollo Amateur Night in Harlem and being able to work with some of the best in the business. 

What is your greatest strength?

I have very unique and strong vocals. 

What is your greatest weakness?

My personal life easily distracts me, though it pays off by inspiring my writing.

What’s the best thing about your career?

I love what I do, it’s like breathing for me I couldn't live without it.  It gives me an outlet that makes me feel incredible.  I am blessed to be able to do what I love. 

What’s the best advice that you can give a young woman faced with society today?

Follow your heart, but listen to your brain.  We can do anything we want if we put our minds to it, and aren’t afraid to believe in ourselves. 

Have you ever felt like you were destined to pursue any other career?

I know I was put on this earth to sing, but I have a brain for business so I have a plan to open my own live music venue where I can hand pick the talent and make sure that the entertainment is flawless. 

I am also in the middle of writing a book.  It is an autobiographical work about some of the experiences I had while running a nightclub in New York, a tell-all if you will.  It’s going to be goooood. 

I’ve never thought of a career outside of the creative arts,  though.  As I get older, I do want to produce and own my own businesses though.  

What are your views on the material you see in the music industry today?

I have always been a big pop fan.  I love catchy tunes and hearing the new takes on music.  Lately I feel like there is very little creativity and honesty in the industry.  It can be incredibly repetitive and loop driven, and the music gets lost.  Unfortunately, we must go through these musical phases in order to get to the good stuff. 

Pop stars are also not limited to music the way they used to be.  Reality TV and all the things that come with it have changed everything and the way it’s done.  Now instead of auditioning for label executives, artists are competing in front of all of America for a chance at being a star.  Sell sell sell.  That’s what matters.  Substance is secondary to the money and the “things” that you can get with fortune and fame.      

What are your thoughts on philanthropy?

Anyone who has the means or the time should give it where they can.  Loving humanity is something that I think has gone missing in our culture.  We sit on the edge of our seats waiting for people to fail instead of hoping to lift each other up when there would be so much more for all of us if we were uplifting each other.  It is shameful that some people have so much when others have so little.  It would be amazing if the passion we feel for our stuff translated to passion for each other.  There would be nothing we couldn’t do if we all focused outside of ourselves.

What’s the best advice you can give an entrepreneur in any industry?

Don’t doubt yourself, but be coachable.  Follow your vision and what you believe in.  It is yours and your name, but remember that others can help you.  Don’t take any offer just because it’s an offer.  Where there is an offer, there is a better one behind it.  Don’t settle for anything but the best for you and your business. 

What’s your favorite past time?

Hanging out with my dogs.  I have three pooches, Georgia, Tennessee and Guapo.  They keep me grounded.  I love nothing more than to spend the day with them at the park.  

What’s your vision when it comes to building your legacy?

I have a recurring dream where I am in an office, my office, and I have a staff that is committed to my business, but happy in their own lives.  Everyone is busy and there is never a dull moment, but people are having fun. 

I am a firm believer that people should have fun.  They should be happy.  If not, then what’s the point.  Every time I perform I want nothing more than for people to get a little bit more of themselves through what I have to say.  Sure, I write my music about my life and my experiences, but the interpretation is what matters.  YOU’RE experience is what matters, and that’s what I live for.  I only hope that I can deliver it for millions of people in the future.  I want my legacy to be that people got themselves through the words I wrote and the music I delivered. 

What do you think is needed to make sure the youth keeps their vision alive?

Education reform.  Each human being is unique imprint on this earth and should be treated as such.  We all have strengths that make us who we are and if I hadn’t been allowed to let my talents shine when I was a kid, I wouldn’t have had the courage to pursue my dreams.  The education system now is creating drones in my opinion.  We as the adults should take what we see in children and hone it, cherish it and develop the skills they are prone to.  We should hear them, not command them.  That was all I wanted as a youth.   

How important of a role did education play in making you the professional that you are today when   it comes to your career choices?

Both of my parents were teachers and educators, so I would say that my education was a huge part of why I became who I am.  I had the American dream when I was growing up.  Sure, I had some undesirable experiences, but all in all, you could make a movie about the schooling experience I had.  I was popular and involved with many different groups including the choir, show choir, jazz band and drill team.  I had that experience because I was good at singing and the teachers wanted me in everything I could be in, but I was never a good student.  I was a good test taker, and a terrible homework maker.  I survived on my talent and graduated with a B+ average, but I learned that everyone loves cool and everyone loves talent.  That taught me a lot about how to survive in the world.     

I didn’t do well at the college level until much later.  Actual education became important to me way later in my life, but I like to think I learn through experiences better than classrooms. 

What’s an average day for you like?

I open my eyes to my dogs scratching at the door to go out, and after I let them out I jump in the shower and head out to Bikram or to the gym where I work hard for at least an hour and a half.  Then I go to a local cafĂ© or restaurant where  I write for two hours a day, either working on my website, blog or writing my book.  I take my dogs out everyday for some quality time, then I prepare for whatever show I have that night.  I vocalize, shower again (I’m an excessive shower taker) and make myself presentable.  I then load up my car and go out to try to change the world one song at a time.   

Is there anyone in the world that you desire to meet with one day? If yes, who and why?

I would love to meet Ani Difranco.   Beyond being a self-made musical guru,  she was the reason I started striving to be a better guitar player and songwriter, not to mention her love for people and her strength to fight for what she believes.  I would love to shoot a game of pool with her and talk about the way things are. 

Have you ever thought about giving up your current career for something else?

Unfortunately, yes.  I fell in love once and I knew he wouldn’t want the life I was after, so I stopped playing for a while.  Needless to say, we didn’t stay together. 

Do you plan on releasing your music in any other language besides English or have any collaboration in mind?

I would love to do an album in Spanish.  I am a proud Mexican woman who has been shy about the way I speak Spanish, even though I am fluent.  My family is hugely bilingual, and it’s something I intend to bring to the next generation.  Language is the vessel to understanding culture, and intern, understanding each other. 

In your journey so far, what is your best lesson that you’ve learned?

There is enough for everyone.  This isn’t a battle, especially between women.  We don’t need to fight for a piece of the pie.  The plate is as big as we want it to be and I want mine, and everyone else’s to be big and full. 

What was the turning point in your life when you realized that you had to share your passion with the world?

The first time I sang in front of an audience.  I was 10 and it was the 6th grade talent show.
Then it was the first time I wrote a song that I knew was good.  I realized then that I could communicate a message through my music.

Tell me something about you that no one would believe?

I still wear a retainer every night.

If you made the front of a magazine cover, what magazine would it be and what would the title/subtitle say?

Rolling Stone 

"She’s went Rogue".

If you had your own brand of fortune cookies and was only allowed one statement that would be read by billions, what would it say?

You are whole, complete and perfect. 

What do you think the biggest mistakes that individuals make in their career choices?

Sell their integrity. 

When do you think you will retire from your career business?

I don’t think I will. 

What three things do you think attributed to your success?


What is your greatest belief?

We are perfect the way we are and the way we’re not.  Whole, complete and perfect.

Tell me about your experience on Apollo Amateur Night at the world famous Apollo theater.  

I loved my experience at the Apollo.  It is the real deal all the way.  The people are amazing and the talent is phenomenal.  Every time I was terrified, that never went away, but I learned a lot about myself as a competitor and a singer.  I did an original song for the competition, and I was the first person in over a decade to win with an original.  That says more to me than anything about my music. 

I also learned that not everyone is going to love me all the time.  Sometimes people are downright mean and vengeful and there’s nothing I can do about it.  I have to be okay with that I can’t please anyone.

What inspires you when you write your music?

Love and pain.  I try to feel the entirety of a song before I sit down to write it.  I think about what I want to deliver and whom I want to deliver it to, sometimes taking weeks, and then I sit and write it in minutes.  I am only now, after two decades of writing, learning how to write about happiness.  Happiness is hard to accept as a valid emotion for me. 

Have you ever considered pursuing a career in music full time and touring?

Of course!  I do music full time, but I’ve never toured playing with my band.  I was an auto show product presenter for five years where I toured the country, but it wasn’t music related.  I would love to tour!

What project are you currently working on and when can we expect a release date?

I have a new album coming out at the beginning of May.  I did a kickstarter campaign to fund it and it is now in the postproduction phase.  It is an album that chronicles my journey through New York.  It was a cathartic experience and the first time I ever did a full album on my own.  

Do you plan on having a tour for your music?

Yes, but I don’t have the plans yet!

How can readers purchase your music, book you for a show or get in touch with your for any of your current projects?



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